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Indiana Pacers v Phoenix Suns

Source: Christian Petersen / Getty

(Phoenix, AZ) – The Indiana Pacers (24-19) close out their six-game road trip with 117-110 loss to the Phoenix Suns (24-18).


On Friday night, Devin Booker blitzed the New Orleans Pelicans for 25 points. He wouldn’t score that many against the Pacers, but he was above his average of 7.1 points per first quarter. After 90 seconds of play the two teams were tied at four. Phoenix would then go on a 18-4 run to go ahead by 14 points with Booker being the catalyst for their offense. Rick Carlisle would call a timeout with 5:35 left and his bench would respond by cutting it down to five inside the final minute. Grayson Allen would burry a three in the final thirty seconds to take an eight-point lead into the second quarter. Booker led all scorers with 12 first quarter points. Former Sun, Jalen Smith, would lead Indiana in scoring with eight points. Indiana trailed after on 33-25.


Indiana’s offense was humming in the second quarter like it would if Tyrese Haliburton was running the show. There wasn’t a player that got hot for Indiana outside of Buddy Hield, who scored nine. There was a total of seven players that scored for the Pacers. As for Phoenix, the other two of their big three were outstanding. Bradley Beal and Kevin Durant combined to go 10/14 in the quarter for 25 points. Beal scored 11 and Durant scored 14. In the first two minutes of the period, Indiana went from trailing by eight to leading by one. The Suns would go back up by four not too long after that. After the Pacers tied it up at 44, Phoenix went on a 16-5 run to go back ahead by double-digits with 2:28 left. Indiana narrowed the deficit to four points to trail 65-61 at halftime. Durant led all scorers with 20 points. Phoenix’s big three amassed 52 points. Indiana’s leading scorer was Jalen Smith with 13 points. What kept the Pacers in the game was forcing 10 turnovers.


Coming out of halftime, Rick Carlisle’s team would cut the deficit to one after going down six. However, the Suns would respond much like they did in the first half to extend their lead back out to eight points. There would only be a couple instances where the Pacers got within two possessions. Most of the time the two teams were exchanging buckets in the third or both teams were getting stops at the same time. After three the scoreboard would read Suns 91 – Pacers 83. KD led all scorers with 27 points followed by Booker with 23 and 7 assists. Indiana was paced in scoring by Smith with 15.


After failing to go on a run in the third, the Pacers opened the fourth quarter with a 11-3 burst after going down 93-83. Durant would score six quick points to put his team back up by nine. Indiana would respond with baskets from Buddy Hield and Obi Toppin followed by a free throw from Andrew Nembhard. Pacers would not go away though. That same trio of players plus a pair of free throws from Pascal Siakam put Indiana down 103-102. After both teams failed to convert a field goal for nearly three minutes, Hield drilled a three to give the Pacers their first second half lead, 105-103 with 3:23 to go. After holding the Suns scoreless over three minutes, they did not miss the rest of the game. Durant, Beal, Grayson Allen, and Booker combined to go 5/5 while the Pacers offense only scored one field goal on five shots with two turnovers mixed in. Phoenix wins it 117-110.

TOP PERFORMERS: Kevin Durant (40p, 9r, 3b), Devin Booker (26p, 8a, 6r), and Bradley Beal (25p, 4r, 3a). For Indiana, Buddy Hield (18p, 4r, 3a), Jalen Smith (15p, 4r, and went 5/5 from the field), and Pascal Siakam (15p, 7a, 4r). For tonight’s full box score, click here.

NOTES: The Pacers conclude their six-game road trip with back-to-back losses and lost their final two. Three of the Pacers six worst games shooting came on this road trip (tonight’s 44% marked sixth worst shooting effort). With the loss, Pacers are now 11-11 on the road. Indiana’s next opponent in the Denver Nuggets has defeated them seven straight times and 8-30 since the start of the 2005 season.

NEXT UP: The Indiana Pacers now return home for a four-game homestand starting on Tuesday night as the defending champions come to town. Tip-off between the Denver Nuggets and Indiana Pacers is set for 7pm eastern from Gainbridge Fieldhouse. The Kroger Pregame Show with Pat Boylan will start at 6:30pm on 93.5/107.5 The Fan.

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